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Magnolia Pictures Acquires Cannes Prize Winner 'Force Majeure'

Photo of Ryan Lattanzio By Ryan Lattanzio | TOH! May 28, 2014 at 4:18PM

Magnolia Pictures has scooped up US rights to Swedish director Ruben Ostlund's dark family comedy "Force Majeure," winner of the Un Certain Regard Jury Prize at this year's Cannes Film Festival.
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'Force Majeure'
'Force Majeure'

Magnolia Pictures has scooped up US rights to Swedish writer/director Ruben Ostlund's dark family comedy "Force Majeure," winner of the Un Certain Regard Jury Prize at Cannes. Here's the synopsis:

"Force Majeure" tells the story of a Swedish family on a pleasant ski vacation in the French Alps. During a lunch at a mountainside restaurant, a looming avalanche turns everything upside down. With diners fleeing in all directions, the mother shields her children. Meanwhile, the father grabs his iPhone and runs for his life. When the anticipated disaster fails to occur, a marriage hangs in the balance and family dynamics are upended in this wickedly funny psychodrama.

Washington Post's Ann Hornaday calls this arty disaster film "stingingly clever and well executed, filmed with crystalline clarity and observant humor." The Playlist admires its great visuals and "cerebral rather than visceral, ruthless rather than emotive" qualities; Variety calls it "Haneke meets 'Scenes from a Marriage.'"

"Force Majeure" is Ostlund's fourth feature. Last year's Un Certain Regard Jury prize winner, "Omar" from Palestine, was nominated for the Best Foreign Language Film Oscar. Jury Prize winners, including "Elena" and "Police, Adjective" in recent years, typically find a decent home at US arthouses. Release date forthcoming.

This article is related to: Cannes Film Festival, Cannes, Magnolia Pictures, Festivals


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Born and raised in Manhattan, Anne Thompson grew up going to the Thalia and The New Yorker and wound up at grad Cinema Studies at NYU. She worked at United Artists and Film Comment before heading west as that magazine's west coast editor. She wrote for the LA Weekly, Sight and Sound, Empire, The New York Times and Entertainment Weekly before serving as West Coast Editor of Premiere. She wrote for The Washington Post, The London Observer, Wired, More, and Vanity Fair, and did staff stints at The Hollywood Reporter and Variety. She eventually took her blog Thompson on Hollywood to Indiewire. She taught film criticism at USC Critical Studies, and continues to host the fall semester of “Sneak Previews” for UCLA Extension.